Shrimp Scampi with Polenta

Last Updated on July 25, 2023

The iconic Italian corn porridge polenta meets the Italian-American hero that is shrimp scampi in this recipe. Think creamy-rich polenta with the spice, garlic and lemon punch of shrimp scampi. ButcherBox’s Shrimp, which are already shelled, deveined and cleaned, make for an easy dinner. And with just a few pantry ingredients here, dinner really comes together quickly. There’s just a little bit of whisking to do, but that’s not so bad.

Shrimp Scampi with Polenta

4.12 from 9 votes
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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4


  • 1 cup coarse polenta
  • Salt 
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan 
  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup white wine 
  • 1/2 tsp crushed chili flakes
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 lb ButcherBox Shrimp, defrosted, rinsed and patted very dry 
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • Chopped parsley, for serving


  • Make the polenta by heating 4 cups of water in a medium pot or saucepan over high. Once boiling, pour in the polenta and cook, whisking vigorously until the polenta has become one with the water, but not yet thickened, about 5 to 7 minutes. Turn down the heat to medium-low and keep cooking, whisking regularly until polenta is thickened, softened and holds its shape, about 20 to 25 minutes. You may need to add a little water, about ¼ to ¾ cup, if the polenta gets so thick that it doesn’t pool on a plate. Turn off the heat, stir in 2 teaspoons of salt (Diamond Crystal kosher, but adjust based on your salt’s saltiness), 2 tablespoons of the butter and the Parmesan. 
  • Meanwhile, make the shrimp scampi while you regularly whisk the polenta. In a large skillet (10- or 12-inch diameter), heat the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the white wine, bring to a simmer and reduce to about ½ the volume.
  • Turn up the heat to medium-high and add the crushed chili flakes, black pepper, fennel seeds and shrimp to the skillet. Cook, tossing the shrimp frequently, until entirely pink and just cooked through, about 3 minutes. Turn off the heat, juice the lemon over. Season the sauce and shrimp with salt, as needed. 
  • Spoon the polenta onto plates. Place the shrimp scampi on top then sprinkle the chopped parsley over. Drizzle with more olive oil, if desired.
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